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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>i am a sub contractor did a job to customer paid the retail store for labor and materials,but i did not get paid yet,what my legal right?

i am a sub contractor did a job to customer paid the retail store for labor and materials,but i did not get paid yet,what my legal right?

CaliforniaLawsuitMechanics LienPayment DisputesPreliminary Notice

i finished the work ,but have not got paid from the retail store who gave me the job,

1 reply

Jul 20, 2018
I'm not entirely sure I follow your question, but let's take a look.

From what I understand, it looks like you were a subcontractor hired (by a retail store?) to do some work for which you are unpaid.

In California, a subcontractor must provide a preliminary notice in order to retain the right to file a valid and enforceable mechanics lien. In order to cover all of the work done, the preliminary notice must be provided within 20 days of first starting work. If the notice is given late, it is effective to work starting from 20 days prior to the notice being given. Note, however, that wage laborers are not required to give preliminary notice in California. So, if you were a laborer rather than a subcontractor there may not be notice required.

Further, in California a party that did not contract directly with the property owner must file their lien within 90 days form the completion of the total project (or within 30 days from the filing of a notice of completion/cessation, if one was filed).

Absent mechanics lien remedies, there is also the option to proceed with a lawsuit, whether in small claims court (if the amount at issue is within the limits) or in regular court.

Finally, note that California has very strict requirements for contractor licensing, and parties who are required to be licensed but who are not are generally forbidden from recovery through both mechanics liens and lawsuit processes.
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